Indonesia is laying undersea cables that will connect cities across the country to faster internet, the Communications and Information Minister announced.

“All regency and municipal capital cities will be connected to broadband service by January 1 2019,” Minister Rudiantara said.

There is great variation in internet quality across the country, with speeds in Jakarta 25 times than in the remote eastern provinces of Maluku and Papua, he said.

“The infrastructure is yet to reach all regions in the country,” he added. Around 77% of regional capitals are connected to broadband infrastructure.

The country will layout 11,000 kilometres of undersea fiber optic across the country. Construction in west and central Indonesia will start by end of the year, costing IDR 1.28 trillion (U$96 million) and IDR 1.38 trillion (US$104 million) respectively.

This project comes as mayors across the country are announcing smart city projects. They are looking to provide citizens with services via mobile apps and building operations centres to analyse data from agencies.

Image by Lino Bento, licensed under CC BY 2.0